This Might Be Why Lyme Disease Is Spreading So Much

Photo: Getty Images.
Lyme disease is impacting Americans in record numbers — and climate change may be to blame. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that approximately 30,000 cases of Lyme disease are reported every year.

These numbers may increase as climate change allows ticks, the carriers of Lyme, to live longer.

STAT, a medical site, reports that ticks are forest animals. So, they often drown or freeze during the winter. However, climate change has made winter warmer and summers longer, so ticks are surviving longer, according to STAT. Plus, the warmer weather lets tick mature faster, as well, so more of them are seeking blood to survive.

This leads to Lyme disease being transmitted more quickly and more often. Mosquitoes are also thriving in warmer winters, according to the site.

Those inflicted by Lyme disease suffer from flu-like symptoms, according to the CDC. It can range from chills and headaches to fatigue and short-term memory loss. What's worse is STAT said there's little humans can do to slow down the stampede of Lyme-carrying ticks.

"The consequences of climate change will be felt most profoundly by people living in or near areas where diseases carried by mosquitoes and other vectors are already common and where poverty makes it difficult to stamp out these diseases," STAT explained.

Advertisement
Advertisement

More from Body

If i make your waist slimmer and your boobs bigger to accentuate the fact that i drew you as a mermaid, a mythological creature, doesn't mean I say ...
Falling asleep is a natural process, so it should be easy, right? Ha! We wish. Of course, we've all had trouble getting to sleep at some point. But for ...
It's hard to ignore that we are at a pivotal moment in history in terms of women's reproductive rights. But in addition to being an issue at the forefront ...
Pregnant women get a lot of advice about motherhood, even when they don't ask for it. And in the first episode of Expecting, from Refinery29's comedy ...
UPDATE: Unfortunately, the video in question has been removed for copyright infringement, but you can take a look at a teaser here. If you recall, back ...
Brittany Mostiller still remembers the moment when she realized that she couldn’t afford an abortion. “I didn’t know anything about this Hyde Amendment ...
Earlier this year, Lena Dunham was hospitalized to treat a ruptured ovarian cyst, unintentionally shedding light on an often ignored area of women's health...
(Paid Content) Stress sweat is different from regular sweat in that it feeds off bacteria and causes odor. Then you start to think about it — producing ...
If your eyes tend to glaze over at first mention of the latest Health Hack That Will Change Your Life, we can’t really blame you. Although we are literally...
We're in plus-size pool party heaven
Summer is over (for real). So it's time to face the facts: You're going to get a cold. Actually, you're probably going to get colds — plural. The average ...
The pelvic exam — complete with the stirrups and the speculum — isn't anyone's favorite thing about having a vagina. But it's really important because it's...
A few years ago, two Michigan urologists noticed a curious pattern among their patients: Upon returning from a Disney World vacation, patients would ...
It shouldn't be this complicated, all this body stuff: size discrimination, weight bias, the multi-factioned movement fighting to reverse it. At its core ...